Newcomers and volunteers working together to build more welcoming communities.
Together Project’s role in keeping Canada inclusive is creating a structured opportunity and tools for newcomers and volunteers to connect. People volunteer for different reasons: to connect with others, to feel a sense of purpose, to get outside of themselves, to find gratitude, to develop new skills, to learn. It’s easy to think of refugees as the sole or even principal beneficiaries of the matches Together Project facilitates. But we see these social connections as equally beneficial to volunteers as to newcomers. It’s a two-way street. Read more here.Read More
Together Project’s Co-Director’s wish to thank the the Colloquium on Refugees, Migrants & Statelessness and the Center for International & Area Studies, Weinberg College, Northwestern for inviting us to share our work with our co-hosts as part of a free webinar on April 22nd: Volunteer Engagement With Refugees: Remote Social Support Today.
You can find a recorded version of the webinar here. #TogetherHello
Please click here to download our new language practice guide that we have created to help volunteers navigate online language practice sessions with newcomers. It’s based on best practices and experiences of Welcome Groups, tips from professional language tutors, and other language instructors we’ve interviewed across the GTA. A special thank you to the McConnell Foundation / Innoweave for their generous support in developing this resource.
If we recognize that our well being is linked to the well being of others, our collective efforts to promote and encourage community building and a sense of belonging for newcomers and Canadians alike is critical to a positive, healthy future. Newcomers may be feeling particularly isolated due to COVID-19, especially if they are very new to Canada. They can’t explore their neighbourhoods or meet their neighbours. But they can meet remotely with volunteers who care about their well-being, about inclusion, diversity, and the future. There is so much heart for the work and now we have found a new way to allow bridges to be built, strengthening an overall sense of compassion and understanding. We are stronger together. Read more here.Read More
If you are a Welcome Group volunteer matched with a refugee claimant household in Toronto or Mississauga, please see our updated list of resources regarding legal assistance, health services, shelter, and housing support services, employment and volunteering, language acquisition, education and accreditation, women’s services, children and youth services and available social supports. This document also contains information for refugee claimant matches on food banks, LGBTQ services, household supplies and technology. For supports related specifically to COVID-19, please click here.
Nicholas Keung of the Toronto Star interviews Together Project’s co-directors and match participants on why it is so important for volunteers to offer remote social support in response to COVID-19. “Maintaining social contact is a major challenge for all, but newcomers, particularly refugees, are among the most vulnerable. We want to ensure they have access to accurate information and social connection.” Read more here.